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In most levels of basketball, from youth leagues to the college level, traveling seems to be enforced fairly regularly. However, at the NBA level, traveling seems to be rarely enforced, with the rules now updated to state:

A player who receives the ball while he is progressing or upon completion of a dribble, may take two steps in coming to a stop, passing or shooting the ball.

Since it appears that FIBA rules seem to be similar to those of the NCAA used in the Olympics, does this change in rule enforcement affect the play of NBA stars in the Olympics and other international competition?

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There aren't all that many international competitions, but since this rule was enacted in 2009, it didn't seem to stop the United States team from winning the 2010 FIBA World Championship. With winning, they withdrew from the 2011 FIBA World Cup, since they already qualified for the 2012 Olympics as a result of the 2010 championship and had little to gain.

So being that there has only been one world class international competition, it's difficult to say. The US did win it though, so that would seem to indicate that it was not a significant factor. Whether there was an increase in travel calls, I wasn't able to find any reports on the matter. It's also a very small sample size.

To really answer this question we will have to see what happens in London, keeping track of travels against the US versus other teams.

  • yeah the upcoming olympic competition was one reason that I thought of this question. I was wondering if the problems that the American teams faced in 2004 could be partially attributed to problems working with FIBA rules. The other American "Dream Teams" may have had enough talent to overcome the lack of cohesion from hastily assembled teams and unfamiliarity with international rules. – JW8 Feb 10 '12 at 18:16
  • I see a subtle jab about current talent in there somewhere. :-) – corsiKa Feb 10 '12 at 18:17
  • No jab intended - although having just talent isn't necessarily the best thing. A cohesive roster with good role players is important too. ;) – JW8 Feb 10 '12 at 18:44

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